Indore: Andhra outplayed Jharkhand by seven wickets to emerge on top of Group B in the Vijay Hazare Trophy cricket tournament on Sunday, pipping Tamil Nadu and Jharkhand.
Madhya Pradesh opener Venkatesh Iyer missed out on a well-deserved double ton as he was run out two runs shy of the mark in his team’s big 105-run win over Punjab.
Andhra, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and MP finished equal on 12 points from five matches but Andhra emerged on top thanks to higher net run-rate and secured a place in the knockout phase.
Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand, MP (all 12 points) finished second, third and fourth followed by Punjab (8 points) and Vidarbha (4).
Tamil Nadu defeated Vidarbha by five wickets, chasing down the target of 151 in 11.2 overs to improve its net run-rate. However, Andhra overhauled Jharkhand’s score of 139 in just 9.5 overs to nose ahead on NRR.
In TN match, off-spinner B Aparajith (3/10) and medium-pacers J Kousik (3/22) and M Mohammed (3/33) starred as Tamil Nadu bundled out Vidarbha for 150 in 41 overs.
A few of the Vidarbha batsmen got starts but could not quite go on to make a big score as the TN bowlers kept a tight leash.
In reply, skipper Dinesh Karthik (19), opening the batting, fell in the third over going for quick runs but N Jagadeesan smashed a 18-ball 48 (4X4, 4X6) and helped Tamil Nadu post a win in 11.2 overs with Mohammed (37, 14 balls, 3X4, 3X6) weighing in with a quickfire knock.
Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh rode on a blistering innings of 198 by Venkatesh Iyer (146 balls, 20X4, 7X6) to post a massive score of 402 for 3 in 50 overs before restricting Punjab to 297 in 42.3 overs.